FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
January 8, 2014
NILC Protests Senate Conservatives’ Attacks on Poor Children
On 50th anniversary of the War on Poverty, senators cynically pit unemployed and veterans against kids
WASHINGTON — In a cynical political ploy, conservative senators are pitting millions of children and their families against the unemployed and retired veterans by proposing to reduce the number of people eligible for the refundable Child Tax Credit (CTC) in order to pay for extending unemployment benefits and repealing military pension cuts that were part of the recent budget deal.
“This is a tragic irony—that the senators would commemorate the 50th anniversary of the War on Poverty by creating this false choice and waging war against millions of children in hardworking, taxpaying families,” said Don Lyster, director of the Washington, DC, office of the National Immigration Law Center (NILC).
“Congress should do everything it can to ensure that people who are out of work, our courageous veterans, and the children who are our future are afforded the opportunity to live with basic dignity. Pitting these groups against each other is not a solution but an unscrupulous exploitation of the most vulnerable in our society,” Lyster added.
The extension of unemployment insurance benefits has traditionally been considered an emergency item that does not require a budgetary offset. However, conservatives intent on waging war against the poor and immigrants are proposing changing eligibility requirements and removing benefits even from those who are compelled to pay income and payroll taxes.
NILC estimates, based on a report by the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration, that more than two million working families would be disqualified if these changes occur, compromising our economic recovery.
“This would be a horrible betrayal of the working poor, children, and the Latino community, which would be hardest hit,” Lyster said. “For our national good, this cynical political gamesmanship must stop.”
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